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Quote of the day: Thus in winter stands the lonely tree,
Nor knows what birds have vanished one by one,
Yet knows its boughs more silent than before:
I cannot say what loves have come and gone,
I only know that summer sang in me
A little while, that in me sings no more. (What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why (Sonnet XLIII), Edna St. Vincent Millay)

Hard to believe but it's been over a month since I've posted anything here. I've meant to, just haven't gotten around to it. I'm wasting far too much time over at Facebook, playing games. Vampires, for Christ's sake. I'm playing vampires! Why? I don't know.

Art Jewelry has an article on shibuichi. Bought the issue, haven't read the article yet. Did a little web searching. Reactive Metals wants something like $4.62 a square inch for 24 gauge 25% shibuichi. Shit. I've got to get into the shibuichi business. That's some nice markup.

I've been playing with foldforming some rings and bracelets. I linefolded some copper and thought, well, it's nice but it needs something. So started linefolding some sterling to back it with. That shibuichi article got me thinking. Sterling is dull, reticulation silver is too pissy and brittle (and why foldform it anyway), brass and "bronze" are boring, brass especially. Gold is only for the big kids. Oh, but shibuichi, shibuichi would be so pretty coupled with the copper. The patina options are intriguing and--almost--endless.

But $4.62 a square inch! In what universe?

Listen for reply... )
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Struck by the fact that laid is ugly in french. Oh, well, the little things that amuse me. I did not make it into class over the weekend. Tuesday evening I pulled a muscle in my left shoulder, didn't realize that it had been damaged until Wednesday morning. It was, however, on the mend. On Friday, I, in fact, raised my left arm over my head without thinking and without pain. So cool. Did something to it again on Friday, maybe accumulative little somethings. I don't know. I can pinpoint when I hurt it on Tuesday, not Friday. But oh boy howdy whatever I did Friday not only set me back but way back. I can, however, now raise my left hand to waist level. And there are long stretches without constant big dull aching aching aching pain centered on my acromion (sp) process. Woo hoo! Life is looking up. But it made the carrying of heavy tool cases and tote bags unwise. Not much I could have done. Wouldn't even have been able to saw anything at the bench pin. I need the left hand to clamp the metal down whilst the right hand saws. I could have filed and sanded. Well, filed for sure. Maybe.

Another cold front is upon us. Nothing like last week with our dips into the twenties. We're not even projected to reach freezing tonight. Close but not quite. I have fetched the poinsettias, the new scented geraniums and the curry leaf tree as well as the rosemaries into the car. If I had been feeling better I would have thought perhaps of the foil wrap still enclosing the one poinsettia this weekend whilst it drizzled. Perhaps not. I took scissors out with me and cut the wrap off and I hope that the plant didn't get too wet for too long.

Sandi and I met for brunch yesterday. It was good. And got my mind off my shoulder for long moments. And the way I sat seemed to be perfect and it eased wonderfully. When I am home I'm always asking too much of it. Even nudging the mouse to get the screen to pop back to life was too much. But we talked and caught up and ate sweet potato pancakes. I branched out--I had pepper jack on my grits. She mentioned, again, a book she has on textile techniques for metal and will try to find it for me to look at it. She said it might be next to my chain maille book which she has yet to locate and return to me. I told her about my less than satisfactory trip to Avalon and she allowed as she's had the same problems there. I mentioned that I would probably be going back to pick up some cheap 30 gauge wire. I saw a book on knitting and crocheting wire, didn't think it was worthwhile buying. And decided that I would get more out of playing around with wire and needles and crochet hooks and trying out different stitches. I think more than anything I need to get an actual feel for what wire will do using such techniques, that I will learn more, understand more that way than with a book. At least right now.

And yay oh yay oh yay oh yay! O frabjous day! Josephine Darcy updated three whole chapters tonight. And I have already read them. But only once each. You can tell I'm still not feeling well. In fact I have really begun to fade.

My false roselle is dead, brown and sere, a victim of the last deep cold. Too bad. It was an attractive plant. I hope it sees fit to spring back from the roots. I have no hopes that the scented geraniums will. Now I will have to keep an eye out for another peppermint and a robers lemon rose and such like. This time I will not settle for a snowflake rose without variegation. Oh, who am I fooling? You know I will. It still smells just as good.

I see much potting and planting in my future. Sigh. But a happy sigh. And when my shoulder is all recovered.
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It's been a bit chilly down here in sunny Florida these last few nights. We were projected to hit a low of 19 last night/early this morning but seemed not to have. I'm not complaining. It was cold enough. I didn't cover the scented geraniums. The Robers Lemon Rose and the Snowflake (ha!) Rose look okay; the Peppermint looks the worse for wear. I hope it comes back. 

I was very popular with the cats last night. Moti, of course, spent most of the night under the blankets with me. Miracle tried again to join her. Moti doesn't seem to be able to accommodate her. It's funny, they cuddle all the time but under covers, Moti gets all snarly. At least I didn't get shredded. I told the monkey-faced girl that I would be quite happy to cuddle her and she slept the better part of the night under the blankets by my left shoulder. It was Moti's loss.

The Fairy Princess and I went out this afternoon. It was sunny and I could pretend it was warm. At least with the windows up and the heater going. Our scheduled trip was to Petsmart where we picked up some wet food for the cats, a couple of calendars (I picked up a beardie one as well as a BC) and Breck got a couple of snacks from the cashier. While driving over to Petsmart I remembered that the Indian restaurant had projected a 1 January re-opening. Curious to see if it were true, I drove down there to take a look. Unless they're going for a very minimalistic look--no tables or chairs--they're still not finished doing whatever. I noticed a pickup truck out front with "stuff" in it--carpenterish/handymanish type stuff.

Class starts next week--woo hoo! I am so ready. I'm going to look at Pat's schedule and possibly go over and intercept her if she has a Monday or Tuesday class and get a studio monitor form signed and turned in before the start of class. Then I can stay Wednesday night after class. It's so convenient to do that. I'll be there, I'll have dragged all my stuff in, the kiln will finally be hot enough and I'll be warmed up myself.

I will probably show off my necklace mandrel to Wonder Pat and the other crazies. Karen will probably appreciate it. And woo hoo, I do have the ingot mold and quartz stirring rod. I haven't even opened them up. I should find out if anyone wants to order anything from Hauser and Miller. I should check with Hauser and Miller to see if they sell gold casting grain by the pennyweight. I believe that Rio does.

I can't even visualize a pennyweight of anything. Trouble is, getting more gold won't do me any good because 24k gold is too soft for much applications. Sigh.

I should probably make sure to have closed toe shoes with me the night I make my ingots. It's at least an effort at safety and somewhat safer than wearing my birkenstock Arizonas. I'll need to get someone in addition to Pat to help with the project. It will take two people to melt and mix the alloy while a third is warming the ingot mold. And maybe a fourth to keep an eye on the three people with torches, crucibles and ingot molds, sort of directing traffic. Just kidding.

I wonder how difficult it will be to get the alloys mixed properly? Will the shibuichi be easier? The amounts are not so skewed (68% to 32% as opposed to 96% to 4%). And how will I know if they are well mixed? Properly mixed? I guess I'll find out soon enough.


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